Four good reasons to trust in igus® products for drone-in-a-box systems!

Florian Schiller | 16. April 2021

For some time now, the topic of “autonomous flying drones” has become increasingly important. New companies are being founded all over the world where the technology is being advanced. Two events in particular give the topic a special boost:

  • In January 2021, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved the first fully autonomous commercial drone flights. A Massachusetts-based company was granted permission to operate drones without hands-on control or direct observation by a pilot. This represents a first step in overcoming the legal hurdles and is enormously important for further development.
  • In summer 2019, DHL and the drone manufacturer EHang entered into a partnership to test autonomous parcel delivery in metropolitan areas via drones. This application represents a potential mass market and could revolutionise an entire industry.

An important and necessary component of autonomous flying with drones are so-called drone-in-a-box systems (DIB). One of the main components are charging boxes. In the following, I will use four typical specifications of these systems to show why igus® products are predestined for use in DIB boxes.

1. Outdoor use

Drone-in-a-box systems are mostly used outdoors. Typical applications include security flights, inspections and logistics. As a result, the systems are permanently affected by rainwater, solar radiation and dirt. igus® products are ideally suited for this condition: first, plastics are corrosion-free, which means that rain does not affect an igus® system. Second, unlike ball-guided systems, sliding applications are much more resistant to dirt.

2. Autonomous system

The key USP of drone-in-a-box is the complete autonomy of the system. This means the system works “alone” most of the time. igus® products function completely without lubricants and are therefore almost maintenance-free. This supports the goal of an autonomous system with the longest possible maintenance cycles.

3. Easy transport

In order to be able to flexibly change the place of use, many approaches rely on a transportable system. The igus® products support this goal by being based on lightweight plastic and aluminium. In addition, many products such as the drylin® N series are specially designed for narrow installation spaces.

4. Smaller companies

Many companies that are currently establishing themselves on the drone-in-a-box market are (still) in the start-up or grow-up phase. This is usually accompanied by a limited staff structure and manpower. With a very broad portfolio, igus® offers companies the opportunity to obtain many products and the associated advice from a single source. Motors, linear drives, controls, cables and energy chains can be co-ordinated with each other and supplied by igus®. This saves a start-up massive co-ordination capacities and interface management.

Summary of all advantages
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